Serving size vs Portion size

While many Americans use the words serving size and portion size the same way they actually have different meanings. A serving size is the portion that is recommended by the USDA as a serving of that food group, whereas a portion size is the amount we actually choose to eat. A portion size can be more or less than the actual serving size and has history has shown our portion sizes tend to be too larger. Nearly 34% of American adults are obese which has tripled in the past 30 years. Even more scary 17% of children are now categorized as obese.

Want to see how our portion sizes measure out? What my Twin Cities Live Clip from yesterday.  Also, see what standard serving sizes measure out to and how to visualize that on your plate.

  • Chopped Vegetable: 1/2 cup –> Looks like 1/2 baseball or a rounded handful for adults
  • Raw Leafy Vegetables (salad, kale, spinach, etc..): 1 cup
  • Fresh Fruit: 1 medium piece or 1/2 cup chopped for other fruits –> Looks like the size of a baseball or 1/2 baseball if chopped
  • Dried Fruit: 1/4 cup –> Looks like the size of a baseball
  • Cooked pasta, rice or hot cereal: 1/2 cup –> Looks like 1/2 baseball or a rounded handful for adults
  • Potato: 1 small –> Looks like the size of a computer mouse
  • Meat: 3 ounces (boneless, cooked, ~4 ounce raw) –> Looks like a deck of cards
  • Dried Beans: 1/2 cup cooked  –> Looks like 1/2 baseball or a rounded handful for adults
  • Nuts: 1/3 cup
  • Cheese: 1 1/2 ounces (2 ounces if processed) –> Looks like 4 dice
  • Butter, Oils: 1 tsp –> Looks like 1 dice
  • Peanut Butter: 2 Tbsp
  • Bagel: 1/2 small –> Looks like 1/2 a hockey puck
The new MyPlate website has recommended amounts of each food group that we should consume based on age. For a personalized list of how much of each food group you should consume go their webpage.
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